Project Description

Teacher’s Guide
Poetry Workshop


The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton

by Don Tate

George loved words. But George was enslaved.

Forced to work long hours, George was unable to attend school or learn how to read. But he was determined—he listened to the white children’s lessons and learned the alphabet. Then he taught himself to read. Soon, he began composing poetry in his head and reciting it as he sold fruits and vegetables on a nearby college campus. News of the slave poet traveled quickly among the students, and before long, George had customers for his poems. But George was still enslaved. Would he ever be free?

In this powerful biography of George Moses Horton, the first southern African-American man to be published, Don Tate tells an inspiring and moving story of talent and determination.

Format: Hardcover
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-1-56145-825-7
Publication Date: 9/1/2015
Page Count: 36
Size: 9-1/2″ x 11″
Age Range: 6 – 10
Language: English
Format: Paperback
Price: $8.99
ISBN: 978-1-68263-062-4
Publication Date: 10/1/2018
Page Count: 36
Size: 9-1/2″ x 11″
Age Range: 6 – 10
Language: English
Format: eBook
ISBN: 978-1-68263-117-1
Age Range: 6 – 10
Language: English

Purchase this eBook through the following vendors:

Barnes & Noble

AR Level: 4.5
F&P: GRL S, Gr 4, Genre B
Lexile: 730L
Themes: African-American History, Freedom, Poetry, Slavery
BISAC 1: JNF007050 JUVENILE NONFICTION / Biography & Autobiography / Cultural Heritage
BISAC 2: JNF007030 JUVENILE NONFICTION / Biography & Autobiography / Literary
BISAC 3: JNF025270 JUVENILE NONFICTION / History / United States / Civil War Period (1850-1877)


“[Tate’s] decision to illuminate this remarkable man’s life offers a new perspective with remarkable clarity.” ―Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW

“A lovely introduction to an inspirational American poet.” ―School Library Journal, STARRED REVIEW

“Tate’s mixed-media illustrations glow with bright greens and yellows, radiating a warmth, hope, and promise that echo this stirring biography’s closing message…” ―Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW

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“Moving…” ―Booklist

“A compelling story for any age.” ―The Horn Book Magazine

“A moving biography of a slave who taught himself to read” ―The Boston Globe

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Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award ―Ezra Jack Keats Foundation, de Grummond Children’s Literature Collection, 2016

Carter G. Woodson Book Award (Elementary) ―National Council for the Social Studies, 2016

Christopher Award (Books for Young People) ―Christophers, 2016

Notable Children’s Books ―Association for Library Service to Children, 2016

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Notable Children’s Books in the Language Arts ―Children’s Literature Assembly, National Council of Teachers of English, 2016

Best Children’s Books of the Year (Starred) ―Bank Street College of Education, 2016

CCBC Choices (Biography and Autobiography) ―Cooperative Children’s Book Center, 2016

Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People ―National Council for the Social Studies, Children’s Book Council, 2016

Crystal Kite Member Choice Award (Texas/Oklahoma region) ―Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, 2016

Best Books of 2015: Best of Children’s List ―Kirkus Reviews, 2015

Capitol Choices Noteworthy Books for Children and Teens ―Capitol Choices, 2016

H-E-B / Jean Flynn Award for Best Children’s Book ―Texas Institute of Letters, 2016

Kansas State Reading Circle Recommended Reading List (Starred, Intermediate) ―Kansas National Education Association, 2016

Sequoyah Book Awards (Children’s Masterlist) ―Oklahoma Library Association, 2018

Children’s Crown Award (Nominee) ―National Christian School Association, 2017-2018

Treasure State Award (Nominee) ―Montana State Reading Council, 2017

Storytelling World Resource Awards (Stories for Pre-Adolescent Listeners) ―Storytelling World magazine, 2017

Summer Reading List ―We’re the People, 2016

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Meet the Author/Illustrator

Don Tate2

Don Tate is the illustrator of numerous critically acclaimed books for children. In 2013, he earned an Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Honor Award for his first picture book text, It Jes’ Happened: When Bill Traylor Started to Draw. You can visit  his website here.